In the early 1960’s, the need to reduce delays to an acceptable level where services planned during certain periods at an airport exceeded what the airport could accommodate , induced IATA (International Air Transport Association) to establish a consensus as to which services should be moved, in fairness to all planning to operate during the period. The recommended procedures and priorities were first issued in 1976.
Airport coordination is a means of managing airport capacity. Coordination involves the allocation of constrained or limited airport capacity to airlines and other aircraft operators to ensure a viable airport and air transport operation. It is also a process to maximize the efficient use of airport infrastructure.
The Coordination Process between airlines and airport coordinators is described in the IATA Worldwide Slot Guidelines (WSG). Communication between airlines and coordinators is outlined in the IATA Standard Schedules Information Manual (SSIM) with agreed standard message formats to allow airlines, airport coordinators and schedule facilitators to exchange airport coordination and schedule movement information.
A Coordinator is appointed by the responsible authority, following consultations with the airport managing body, all airlines using the airport and their representative organizations. Coordinators must be functionally and financially independent of any single interested party and act in a way that is: 1) neutral, 2) transparent and 3) non-discriminatory.